A public hearing on the proposed 2018 Londonderry School District budget will be held Thursday, Jan. 12, at 7 p.m. in the Moose Hill Conference Room, Municipal Center.
The working budget for 2017-18 is $71,733,909. Five warrant articles have a total budget impact of $1,113,474, if approved.
In response to current and projected growth, the administration is requesting four new elementary teaching positions, one for each elementary school and one in reserve to see where the next growth spurt is. Also requested is an assistant Pupil Services Coordinator.
Other drivers of the budget include Pupil Services with a working budget for 2018 of $3,469,466, an increase of $126,412 over FY 17. While the district realizes a “cost avoidance” of $77.8 million from bringing students back to the district and is on target to save $9.3 million in FY 18, the numbers of students are on the rise. Director Kim Carpinone has said that Londonderry is responsible for educating more than 100 children on the autism spectrum and more than 70 with emotional or behavioral disorders, both of which are above the state average. She has also seen an increase in children with vision problems, deaf/ hard of hearing students, and ESOL, with 26 Londonderry students not having English as their primary language and speaking nine different languages at home. She has also seen an increase in children requiring one-on-one nursing services, from two to three, she said, and Londonderry Early Education Program (LEEP) increased from 108 children in August to 122 on Dec. 13.
Information Technology or IT is asking for a budget of $762,650, an increase of $52,327 over last year’s $710,323.
The IT budget requests include the following:
• 299 devices, mostly notebooks and laptops. Of these, 159 units are new and 130 will replace older units. The IT department wants to set up additional computer labs in the three elementary schools and add a sixth-grade lab at the Middle School.
• Increase speed by moving the infrastructure from Cat 5 to Cat 6 in one eighth-grade section of the Middle School.
The last day to submit Citizens Petitioned warrant articles is Jan. 10, and all articles must be submitted in writing to the district office.